Check out this graph of mean differences in rates of political participation among income levels from the data collected by students in the Capstone course (survey was of Columbia residents, N is a little more than 600):
Political participation includes voting, making a political contribution, attending a community meeting, attending a school meeting, going to a political protest, etc. It’s just a quick and dirty sum of all the political activities we asked about.
Income is household income, and so we just roughly divided the levels into lower income, middle, and upper.
The relationship between how much money people make and how active they are politically is pretty amazing. Looks like almost perfect linearity.
As I said to class today, if you wonder why politicians don’t care about the poor and are attuned to the needs of the wealthy, well here’s one reason why. The wealthy show up.
Using the Knight Commission’s work on creating informed communities as a starting point, University of Missouri Capstone students recently completed a project to map community information sources in Columbia, Missouri.
This mapping project was a first step in identifying community information needs. As a final project in the class, students will submit a proposal to improve or increase local community information.
Featured below are several of the team mapping presentations from the class.
The first presentation is from the Commies:
This presentation is from the Community Cats:
This presentation is from the Trinity Trackers:
For more information on the Knight Commission report that informed this project, click HERE.
Here’s a quick tally of the important types of community information mentioned in the Capstone classes’ blog posts:
Disaster, emergency, weather information – 3
News – 3
Connections – 3
Events – 2
Youth information – 2
Community services – 2
Employment – 1
Local policies and laws – 1
Food – 1
Budget information – 1
Volunteer opportunities – 1
I did a quick tally on your community information blog posts. The class discussed belonging to the following types of communities:
Work – 8
Fraternity/Sorority – 3
Academic organizations – 3
Sports / Exercise – 3
Charity / Volunteer – 2
Living community – 1
Service community – 1
And here are the ways that community members get information from these communities:
Meetings/interactions/classes/talk – 14
E-mail – 13
Website – 10
FaceBook/Twitter – 9
Newsletters/Flyers/Print – 8
Text messages – 2
Mass media (TV/Radio) – 1
I did a quick count of the good/bad things mentioned in your final blog posts. Here are the results (number of mentions for each in parentheses):
Nixon/Kennedy – in general and/or the books (13)
Social media/networking and politics/revolution; twitter (9)
Stewart/Colbert; political comedy/satire (8)
Bill Moyers’ “Buying the war” and/or media coverage of war (3)
Changing nature of political participation and communication technology (1)
Graber text (1)
Sunstein – “Republic 2.0” (11)
Making of the President 1960 (2)
Media objectivity (2)
Nixon/JFK, in general (2)
Media use trends
Need more discussion of current events not just readings